Jurgen Klopp’s latest Liverpool starlet must now follow Trent Alexander-Arnold example

Jurgen Klopp’s latest Liverpool starlet must now follow Trent Alexander-Arnold example

Trent Alexander-Arnold might be Liverpool‘s main man right now, but it was his counterpart, Andy Robertson, who stole the show during the Reds’ 3-1 win over Crystal Palace on Sunday.

The Scottish star teed up Liverpool’s first two goals to take his tally of assists for the season to nine in all competitions.

While Robertson turned in a stunning performance against the Eagles, the flying full-back was ably assisted by academy graduate Curtis Jones.

Jones was one of the standout performers for the Reds, with his intelligent link-up play with Robertson down the left-hand side cutting through Palace time and time again in the first half.

Although the Reds had to weather the storm after the break, Jones was again instrumental in helping Liverpool smother Palace’s hopes of staging a comeback just days after he produced a storming performance in the Carabao Cup semi-final win over Arsenal.

After a string of impressive cameos since he returned to the side, it’s time for Jones to follow in the footsteps of Alexander-Arnold in order to properly nail down a permanent berth in Jurgen Klopp’s midfield.

Join the debate! Do you think Jones has done enough to nail down a permanent spot in Liverpool’s midfield? Let us know here.

Trent Alexander-Arnold has been in sizzling form for Liverpool this year after racking up 15 assists in all competitions
(
Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC)

Since breaking into the team under Klopp back in 2017, Alexander-Arnold has quickly evolved into one of Liverpool’s most important players due to his stunning offensive returns from right-back.

While Mohamed Salah has been in sensational form this season, and Diogo Jota has recently stepped up to the plate, it’s Alexander-Arnold who has won the majority of the plaudits this season for his remarkable attacking returns.

The 23-year-old has already matched his career-best tally of 15 assists in all competitions with half a season still left to play and is, arguably, Liverpool’s creator-in-chief right now.

While nobody is expecting Jones to clock up those sorts of numbers straight away, adding goals and assists on a consistent basis is the natural next step for the England youth international.

Although Fabinho netted a late penalty to kill the game off for Liverpool, it’s unlikely that he or Jordan Henderson are going to chip in with more than the odd goal from midfield.

Therefore, if he wants to become a permanent fixture in the engine room at Anfield, it’s likely the goalscoring burden will fall to Jones.

He’s already proven that he’s capable of doing so, too. His stunning strike in the 3-3 draw with Brentford back in September capped a real coming-of-age performance before his progress was curtailed due to an eye injury.

Curtis Jones put in another impressive display for Liverpool during Sunday’s 3-1 win over Crystal Palace
(
Mike Hewitt)

Across Jones’ 34 appearances last season in all competitions, he managed four goals and five assists, which isn’t a bad tally.

But if he is to seize the midfield slot that’s still up for grabs following Gini Wijnaldum’s departure, he needs to bump up those numbers.

Against Palace, Jones was highly effective drifting into pockets of space to drive Liverpool up the pitch. As well as nailing a 90% pass completion rate, the youngster created three chances in the match – more than any other Reds player.

It’s clear that he possesses all the required attributes to save Klopp and FSG from shelling out on a permanent successor to Wijnaldum in the summer; something that Klopp alluded to when he sang Jones’ praises at the weekend.

Jurgen Klopp has been talking up Jones recently
(
Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

“Yes, Curtis was really good the last two games. I know him for a long time now and I am one of his biggest fans,” said Klopp.

“From when I first saw him I can remember the talent group training at Melwood on a side pitch and I looked out of my office and saw him and it was ‘Ooof. Wow’.

“The next question was ‘How old is he?’. I think he was 15 at the time but was already clearly a massive talent.

“Talents need to work and he is doing that work and talents need to learn the game and he is doing that every day.

“Sometimes they need a push and Curtis looks like he is that guy – not that he is not concentrating. It is a proper response and if his response is like this then absolutely fine.”

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